Chapter 1: The Golden Boy and The Pretty Girl
Start of Term
Michael Corvin doesn't take Selene Bathory's breath away the first time she sees him.
How can he when he was a boy of eleven and she was a girl of twelve, with a head already full of quidditch, quidditch and even more quidditch? It doesn't have room to regard a boy, any boy, much less a scrawny little first year.
What she takes note from their first encounter however—apart from his long messy hair and blue green eyes—were the whispers (loud ones) that surrounded him when Mcgonagall calls his name. "Corvin, Michael!"
"That's him. That's Alexander's son!"
"Alexander Corvin? No way…He has a kid?"
And that's how he first gets her attention.
It was the start of another term and all Hogwarts students were gathered in the Great Hall, waiting for the sorting of the first years to start and end so the feast can finally begin.
Selene sits a little bit straighter. She, along with just about every old student, momentarily forgets about all the food they'll be consuming shortly, and watches with rapt attention as the apparent son of the Wizarding World's best Chaser scurries awkwardly over to Professor McGonagall.
The Deputy Headmistress motions for Corvin to sit on the stool. Once he does, McGonagall positions the Sorting Hat just an inch above his head. She drops it gently a second later.
Please be in—
"Hufflepuff!" The Sorting Hat exclaims after a moment's hesitation but not before Selene could finish her wishful thought.
Screams from the Hufflepuff table filled the hall and Selene frowns. She wasn't the only one who does.
Hufflepuff always gets the spare, not the gem. But it seems that wasn't the case now – now they got the golden boy.
She turns her head over to the badgers. That's what she calls them in secret. She holds no grudge against the House nor any of its students but she was no less than surprised anyway.
Alexander Corvin's son.
Good for them, Selene thinks. And even better for me.
I'll see you at the pitch, golden boy.
Replacing the loud whispers that broke out when he first marched down the hall along with the other first years, were now overwhelming cheers and applause. Michael finds himself seated beside a boy with dark curly hair and a ready smile. The boy reaches out his hand to shake Michael's and introduces himself as Lucian.
"I'm in third year now—Oh. Look at that. You've got oglers."
Michael turns over to where Lucian points.
He feels his cheeks burning when he locks eyes with a girl…a very pretty girl. He didn't think girls can be pretty before—or ever—but here he was staring at one. Before he could embarrass himself by giving her an awkward smile, she averts her gaze to listen to a group of chattering girls beside her. Michael looks around then glances back at the girl. She was the only one who seemed bored to be here.
He doesn't think too much of it though as he settles down on his seat, waiting for the sorting to finish, and instead focuses on the feeling of extreme relief being sorted to a good house.
I'm a Hufflepuff.
Not a Gryffindor, a voice in his head adds. Who cares? My father said all Houses were good. Well, all except for...
At that thought, Michael does a double take. Discreetly, he peers back over to where the pretty girl sat. She wasn't looking at him anymore. She was watching the sorting ceremony again with her chin propped on the palm of her hand. Ignoring his guilt of staring without permission, he fully takes in her appearance and now notices the colors of her tie.
Green and Silver.
His heart sank.
You're being stupid, Michael. She wouldn't care about you even if she wasn't in Slytherin.
He doesn't know why it mattered so much suddenly how this girl sees him. It wasn't like everyone didn't think of him as anyone else other than Alexander's son. The Alexander Corvin.
Michael sighs. He was supposed to hate his father but he couldn't. It wasn't his fault after all. He was...young. He and his mom were both very young...
The loudest applause shakes him out of his thoughts and he joins in the celebration as Dumbledore, the Headmaster, gives out the shortest speech and with a wave of his hand, food and drink that could feed a hundred—no, a thousand—appeared out of nowhere on the golden plates and goblets that were empty before.
The feast has begun, and so is his first term at Hogwarts.
( At some time, years later. )
Their first kiss wasn't normal as first kisses go. Or that's what Michael thinks.
The first time Selene kisses him he was knocked into awareness of the glaring fact that she was older—not necessarily more experienced, but still older than him, an insignificant difference before that now snuck up on his senses, making his head reel, his knees wobbly, and his heart race more than any time it did when he'd been on a broomstick.
The firm hold she has of his jaw as she takes control of their kiss, her body perfectly pressed against all the places puberty has just recently endowed him with, and the way her tongue clashes unabashedly with his own…
It was all too much.
He pulls away for a second. "Selene–"
And yet it wasn't enough for her.
Michael lets her pull him back and have her way with him. Not wanting to be a passive participant—and it wasn't like he has reasonable control of his hands either—he gently presses his hands on the small of her back, then after some time, braves a pull of her waist closer against his.
And that's when Selene stops the kiss.
Her swollen lips breathe out a weak: "I…I can't send you letters over the summer. My father wouldn't allow it."
They were still holding on to each other, her hands on his chest, his wrapped around her body. They were panting against each other's faces and so it took a few moments for Michael to realize…
"Oh," he says, gulping. "So…"
This was her way of saying goodbye.
Selene nods and looks down, frowning as she toys with his loose tie—on his also undone collar—the same one she used to pull him to her earlier. "If you don't want to kiss then–"
This time it was him who cuts her off, reaching out a hand to cup her face, then he leans his head forward to capture her lips again.
This time it was Michael who takes Selene's breath away.
“I have never held a broom in my entire life.” A small voice says from behind them.
Selene turns around and finds herself looking at the last person she’s expecting to see at the field—at least not within the next two years—Michael Corvin. In the years to come, she’ll regret not taking advantage of the simple fact that she was taller than him, easily towering over the skinny frame of the boy who will someday take hold of her heart. Someday he’ll tease her about missed opportunities and she'll shut him up with a kiss and teasing remark: “Oh just admit you like me dominating.”
“I will,” he’ll say with a smirk and a challenging twinkle in his eyes. “If you admit I was the cutest boy you’ve ever laid your eyes on.”
She wouldn’t answer him, keeping her 'damn you,' in her mind and her smile on her lips.
( But that was later. )
Later, down by the Great Lake, when the fresh water is but an ice-smeared mirror and the Giant Squid an even more faraway fantasy than Hogwarts itself, swimming below the frozen surface. Later, when they’re huddled together by their favorite tree and they’ll be the only people in the whole castle out during that year’s first winter morning. Their laughter will be the only sound in the icy, outside air. She’ll blush furiously despite the cold, lean into him and, gently this time, kiss one reddened cheek. “You looked so small and innocent,” A whisper in his face. "I missed those days.”
She really didn’t. Well… If she was really going to be honest, she did kind of… She missed his cheeks. They had been more ample then and his hair was shorter—but still longer than what she’d thought a boy’s hair should be. And he had that stutter… Oh, that adorable stutter. It wasn’t really as such as she would come to realize. It was just the way he was around her. The only boy who didn’t have a crush on Selene Bathory—or so he always pointedly denied. But the truth was he hid it well. He hid it in that “stutter” of his for a start. He was careful with his words as much as the others were confident and bold with theirs. He hid it in his timed gazes, unlike the ones who ogled shamelessly at her, he looked at her only when it was necessary, when it was acceptable.
And unlike the other boys he genuinely wanted to be her friend.
It was this past realization that had first driven a younger Selene absolutely mad. But of course she knew the world was never fair. She had fancied a boy who only wanted to be her friend. (Not that she’ll ever admit the said fancying in a million years.)
She doesn’t miss that Michael, all right.
Who she misses more, she realizes with a fond smile on her face, was the Michael just a year before they stopped making a fool of themselves and finally got together. The one who made her do a double-take, stopped her from boarding the train early like she always did—she hated the whole fuss of everyone checking up on everyone else just to know how boring their summers were—to stand frozen and stare at him.
Michael Corvin. A Michael Corvin divinely hit by puberty.
It wasn’t even physical the thing that had caught and held her attention. It was just him, and the sudden and surprising ache of longing that she had felt upon seeing him.
Maybe it’s just because you’ve never seen another living soul these past two months, Selene… She remembered arguing with herself.
The oblivious boy had casually stood there, not seeing her, and had one hand running through his now very long hair —it came down an inch above his shoulders—as he talked animatedly to a fellow Hufflepuff.
Has it been that long last term? How can a boy’s hair be growing so fast?
Michael suddenly glanced around and then their eyes locked.
She panicked, wondering if it was the vampire in her who did it—beckoning him to look at her. She’d felt her half immortal heart starting to beat. There was a pause as they regarded each other. He gave her a little wave and smiled at her like he always does—gentle, friendly and safe—but there was also something different in that smile.
( She’ll realize later that his smile for her had changed. It had become more composed and yet somehow teasing. It’s an ‘I’m a young man now, not a young boy. I know I am. I see it in the way you look at me’ smile.
He didn’t stutter once during that year. )
Then and there she'd realized she’s been wanting to talk to him all summer. A sudden, ridiculous urge to run to him had come to her… But that just couldn’t be.
What would I even say? Selene had thought dismally. ‘I missed you…I think. Did you miss me?’
( Later that night after the opening feast—her first sleepless night during that term—buried under her covers and the confused emotions she'd felt, she’ll put up one good fight against her thoughts careening off to recalling how good Michael looked at the platform station earlier in the day… she’ll eventually lose a second later when the memory further unfolds to him basically lighting up when he sees her and even waves at her… the other girls only ever received courtesy nods… Selene smiled before remembering herself, and when she did, she scowled. Tossed and turned in her sleep for the tenth time. Somehow she’s also resenting how wearing muggle clothing suited him so much: a light blue jacket over a plain white shirt, dark jeans wrapped his long, lean legs…
That night was also the first night she would dream a not so innocent dream of her and Michael, with not much clothing involved. )
( But that was all later. )
( Much, much later. )
Today they were at the Quidditch grounds.
The sun was slowly setting below the horizon, leaving the sky rippling in lazy orange to dark purple waves. Twelve-year-old Selene and her teammates were about to gather somewhere at the center of the pitch when Michael Corvin approaches her.
There came a definite hush among the Slytherins.
No one ever walks up to Selene Bathory like it was just a bullet point in their list of afternoon plans.
She stares down at the young Corvin for a few seconds, unaware that the boy had become positively entranced with her—not that the said boy had any clue himself whatsoever. He could only stare up at her too, through the soft-looking fringe curls falling down his eyes. She sees his faint (give it a few years) Adam’s apple bop up and down as he swallows.
She raises an eyebrow, relaying her question without uttering a single word. She would have crossed her arms too—she’s long discovered things get done more quickly when she has her arms crossed—
( Later, Michael will tell her this was very true. )
—but the broomstick she held in one hand made it difficult.
“Well… other than to use it to sweep the floor,” Michael adds, smiling awkwardly. He perhaps felt there was a need to explain himself some more, he did just sneak up on her.
We haven’t even been properly introduced, Selene thinks with a scowl. Or is he assuming I already know him because he has a famous father? Now, that’s a bit arrogant…
“Cuh-C-Can you teach me?” She ignores his stutter as she also ignores a small downward swoop somewhere in her stomach when he gives her an impish, yet nervous grin after he asks his question. Less of a grin and more of a grimace. The regret was there in the smile.
“I beg your pardon?” She asks him back, sounding incredulous.
“Sorry.” He was blushing now and tries to start again. "Can you tuh-t-teach me how to fly, miss?” (This insulting address she ignores too.) "I heard you’re the youngest player in all of the house teams.”
Selene didn’t expect that.
She wasn’t expecting that at all.
There was a silent but very pregnant pause between them.
You don’t know how to fly? She wanted to ask him but thought better of it. There was some kind of wariness from the way he held himself. He looked more than just a nervous boy walking up to an older girl. An older girl, not to mention a stranger from a different house. There was uncertainty, almost a defensive stance radiating off of him. Seeing him like this, Selene tries to push an old, unwanted memory but it came anyway—one of her as a young girl, with her older sister and their lord father.
Lord Viktor introducing his daughters in front of his noble acquaintances.
“…and this one…” The last Lord of the Vampires takes a pause, tone now clearly losing its enthusiastic drawl after he’s done presenting his eldest daughter. "This is Selene.”
She looks at her teammates around them. They were all older than her, but having a father like hers (also being a vampire) has its perks. And so without taking her eyes off him, she says to them, “You should start warming up, I’ll catch up with you all in a few minutes.” She walks off to another direction, closely trailed by a very surprised and (she strongly suspects) very relieved Michael.
“All right," Selene turns on him, as they stopped walking to stand by a particularly large tree. She leans her broomstick on the huge branch before facing him. “Michael, is it?” She tests his name out with her lips. She opted out of calling him by his surname at the last second. "This better be worth my time.”
“I…” Michael says then stops. He lowers his gaze and blushes again. His ears were the telling tale this time. She was finding the behaviour weird now. Surely a boy can’t be blushing all the time.
"My father never taught me,” he finally confesses.
Somehow she suspects he knew that she would understand this, empathize with him. It left her confused and yet… slightly at ease. Of course the great Alexander Corvin has a fault. And he shares it with more than half of the world's male population—wizards, immortals and humans alike.
He’s a shitty father.
“I just met him this summer,” the boy continues before stopping again. She could only stare at him but her expression now was more kind.
“Oh,” she says, hoping that her voice sounded more surprised than she actually felt. Well, she was surprised. But just a little. The star Chaser was the youngest professional player in a century, of course there was a good and bad side to it. She’s staring at the latter side right now.
"I know I should be angry… I am, but…" then he trails off.
Do I comfort him? She thinks, panicking a little. She’s not particularly good with feelings. Ah, yes. Why don’t you start with ‘Your father sounds just as lovely as mine. We should be friends.’ That would go well.
“Everyone’s expecting me to be you know…”
I expected you, too. She says inside her head.
“…But I know nothing about this stupid game!” He swallows hard after this sudden and quite childish outburst, avoiding Selene’s gaze. He knows he’s blown his only chance of her teaching him three confessions ago. Why couldn’t I just stop blabbering?
He gives her a stupid bow (because he hasn’t embarrassed himself enough already) and hastily turns around to run.
A few steps away he hears her shout: “Sport!”
Stopping and turning he says, “What?”
There was a pause and this time she does something that Michael will become so familiar with in the years ahead. She crosses her arms.
He ran back to her, hesitant. This is why I’m not in Gryffindor.
“It’s not a game,” he hears say, irritation clear in her voice, as he stands back in front of her. She was frowning but he can tell it’s more because of the fact that she doesn’t like to talk and less of the fact that she’s annoyed with him. "Not just a game. It’s a sport. First thing you should know.”
Well… That went all right then, Michael, eh? Now, don’t ruin it by ogling at her with your mouth open.
“—don’t have to worry,” she was still talking. “I’ll teach you."
“Really?” He practically shouted this at her. He felt so close to bursting. She said yes! She’s going to teach me!
“Yeah, whatever.” She shrugs as she reaches out to her broomstick again. “We still have to practice today so… I’ll meet you, I don’t know, tomorrow, I guess? Another shrug. “Seven—exactly seven. And If you’re late, even by a minute—“
“I won’t.” He was smiling again—a full grin. “Thanks very much…” And for a moment he left it hanging like that. He didn’t know what to call her, but repeated his awkward address earlier anyway. “…Miss?”
“Selene.” She said, sounding surprised he is even thinking it over. “‘Miss' is what you call someone who’s a hundred years old, an aging, lonely lady with seven cats.”
I know I should be updating my other fic but the draft for this chapter has been sitting on my files for literal YEARS! So I did it justice (?) and edited it and stuff... I don't know if anyone's closely following this AU, but here's me posting a new chapter anyway :)
Would still love to hear any thoughts to those who's reading this though! :D